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Tomb of the Lost Queen « . , ¸ ¸ , . review by Brenna!

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  • Tomb of the Lost Queen « . , ¸ ¸ , . review by Brenna!

    Tomb of the Lost Queen

    Tomb of the Lost Queen is the 26th Nancy Drew PC game, and the first to take place in Egypt. There is something incredibly unique about this game... if you continue to read, I will explain what I mean

    Side note: Wow, this is long. My apologies. I got carried away.

    Nancy has been asked by someone named Professor Jon Boyle to help out at an archeological dig site -- only a violent sandstorm ensues and Jon Boyle is knocked unconcious. Other strange things begin to happen, and Nancy must discover, is it really the curse of whoever inhabits the ancient tomb that is causing these accidents, or is it one of the few people living on the site? My opinion on the plot is this: It's... meh. When I first heard the title of the game, I think I did an inner groan. I mean, I love history and am especially interested in ancient civilizations, but the Egypt/tomb/curse theme is just so overplayed. It's become quite cliche, so in a way I suppose I should be impressed by HER for holding out on it until game number 26. *brief applause* That being said, HER used this overdone theme quite effectively. It wasn't completely predictable. I did feel like the "curse" could have done spookier, or worse things, or maybe just more things in order for me, as the game player, to feel a little creeped out by it. The whole time, instead of feeling like "Man, I don't want this curse to get me. I probably shouldn't touch this thing in the tomb" I was more like, "LOL the curse isn't real, what's Lily (a character in the game) freaking out about?" I wish I had felt more threatened by it, to increase the urgency and eeriness of both the game and its setting. Another thing I disliked about the plot was the loose ends. Maybe I just missed some things but I feel like there were multiple instances were certain subjects were not fully explained. I'd like to go into detail, but this is a spoiler-free zone, so I'll stop there. Basically what I'm saying is... the game left many issues unresolved, and certain events were never spoken of again! That was probably my biggest pet peeve about this game. I hate plot holes. In an otherwise solid plot, the plot holes bring this game's plot rating down a notch. On the positive side however, I felt that the plot was fairly engaging and moved at a good pace; there weren't a lot of "Hmm... nothing's happened for a while now & I'm bored" moments. It was a tiresome theme, but the plot, while full of holes, was anything but.
    Rating: 6/10

    Okay. So I have a few things to say about this. Firstly, I will explain the setting. There is a main tent with beds where everybody sleeps. There is also what's called an "antiquities tent" where supplies and other fun stuff is kept. Then there is a water tank with a lawn chair by it. And then the tomb. And... that's it. I have to admit, the first time I played this game, I clicked around forever trying to figure out how to get to a different place. I was positive there was somewhere else to go and was immensely disappointed that there wasn't. It just seemed so small! I almost wanted to cry I was actually so upset about it. (Well, not cry of sadness, but of frustration. And I didn't. So don't give me that look). However, as the game went on, I forgot about this disappointment, or maybe it just evaporated. Because as you play the game, the tomb grows as new things are uncovered, and suddenly it seems like there's too much to explore. Although I was sad at first, I actually liked how the game progressed and expanded like this. It was as though the amount of area to explore increased as Nancy uncovered new clues. It was actually kind of cool and well done. Now, as for the appearance of the setting -- very good. It seemed realistic and the tomb was beautiful. It also had kind of a sunny, happy vibe to it, which I enjoyed after so many scary night-time based games!
    Rating: 8.5/10

    The first time I played this game, I might've said the characters were just.. alright. But after replaying, I realize... they are actually quite good! Well, most of them. But I'll get to that. The only major concern I have was that, with the exception of maybe Jamila and ever so slightly barely almost not really Dylan, the characters didn't develop very well, if at all.

    Lily Crewe: Lily is a university student chosen by Abdullah to help work on the dig site. I wasn't a big fan of Ms. Lily Crewe. She wasn't terrible or anything, but I don't know, she also wasn't incredibly interesting, or even nice. I did enjoy how she was so paranoid about the curse, as that helped the game's plot out a bit by making the curse seem like a big deal at least in one character's mind. Overall though, Lily was slightly arrogant (and not in an amusing way) and a little off-putting. She had some shining moments here and there, but let's just say, if I met her in real life, we probably wouldn't be friends. And I'm not even that picky.
    Favourite Lily quote: "Okay, so you're nuts. I'll make a note of it and hide the sharp things."

    Abdullah Bakhoum: Abdullah is a famous aracheologist, in fact, one of the best in the world. And oh boy, does he know it. The first time I played this game, I though Abdullah was annoying and rude and needed a swift roundhouse kick to the face. But after replaying, he's actually pretty funny. I don't know why I didn't get him the first time around, but now I recognize him as the kind of character that you love to hate. And what's more fun than that? Oh, right -- nothing.
    Favourite Abdullah quote: ""A few tips? Yes. That is how I learned to read hieroglyphs - at first they were inscrutable and mysterious, but then I got some tips...just look in your books."
    He had some pretty deep ones too.. but this one makes me laugh, so I picked it instead. (You kind of need his voice for it to work)

    Jamila El-Dine: Jamila is a woman who hangs out in the tomb, claiming to be marvelling at the work of the Annunaki, a.k.a aliens who built the tombs (also the pyramids) many years ago. I liked Jamila right of the bat. I thought that she and her beliefs were pretty interesting. She also managed to be soft-spoken, crazy, sassy, and smart all at once. I can appreciate that. She was a unique character and was needed in the game, I think. The other three characters were fairly similar in ways, but she was just something completely different and new, so she was refreshing to talk to.
    Favourite Jamila quote:
    Nancy: "What do you think of Dylan?"
    Jamila: "The tour guide?"
    Nancy: "Yeah."
    Jamila: "Did I have to have an opinion of him?"
    Nancy: "I guess not."
    Jamila: "Oh good, that's a relief."
    Which is an excellent segway to....

    Dylan Carter: Ah, Dylan. Dylan is a tour guide who randomly and unexplicably pops at the dig site, even though its years away from being opened to the public. Suspicious, very suspicious. Like Jamila, Dylan was an interesting character due to his strange prescence at the site. I felt almost like Lily and Abdullah were on one team, and Jamila and Dylan on the other. I happened to favour the misfits, as they intrigued me more. I couldn't figure out why Dylan was there and that made him very interesting to me. Also, I enjoyed his personality. He was funny but able to be serious, and also a little eccentric. He was probably the most likable and personable character, and the one I looked forward to talking to the most. Perhaps my favourite from the game. I also loved his voice. Like, seriously. Loved.
    Favourite Dylan quote:
    Dylan: "What should I do if I see her? We should have a code word."
    Nancy: "I don't know if that's necessary."
    Dylan: "Right. Right. How about, "Look out, it's Lily!" Or, "She's back, stop looking at her things.""
    Nancy: "Okay. First of all none of those are one word -"
    Dylan: "Good point. What about 'Danger!' or 'Incoming!' or 'Impending Lily!'"
    Nancy: "Maybe if you just whistle."
    Dylan: "Right. All good options."

    Rating: The cast of characters was solid. I enjoyed the variety, and the humour. However, there wasn't enough development for me. I feel like the plot holes affected this. If the plot holes had of been filled in, all would be right in the world. But alas... 8/10

    Ah, puzzles! Everyone's favourite part! Just kidding. Or maybe it is your favourite. In which case, my apologies. I appreciate and accept our differences. Let's move on. I am not much of a puzzle fan, although I do enjoy them from time to time. I wouldn't say I'm a puzzle-hater. More of a puzzle-acquaintance. Or a puzzle-second cousin twice removed. Yeah, that works. (I'm sorry, it's like 3 am. I don't know why I'm writing this right now. I shouldn't be). ANYWAY, the first time I played this game, I thought "Wow! These puzzles are hard! And there's so many of them." But in replaying, I realized I was just lazy the first time. The puzzles are a moderate difficulty level. They might take some thinking and a few tries but they are definitely doable. (No giant nonagram/renogram/instagram/whateveragram here). Also, I thought, while a lot of these puzzles wouldn't actually happen in an ancient Egyptian tomb, (I'm willing to believe that they could), they made sense to the game. I wouldn't say there were a lot of puzzles, either. I'd say a slightly above average amount. And they were pretty good puzzles too. The one in the cat tomb with the mice was especially well done, and pertained to Ancient Egyptain history exquisitely. Well done on the puzzles, HER. (I almost never say this sentence). I also loved decoding the hieroglyphs, and while I didn't use it, it was nice of HER to put Quick Translate as an option.
    Rating: The puzzles were good, a few were great. The amount was nice. 8/10

    What's even the point in this category? I don't know anything about graphics! What I do know is that the tomb was incredibly detailed, vivid, realistic, and awesome. The characters looked suave in Dylan's case, cranky in Abdullah's, pretty in Lily's, and mysterious in Jamila's. Well done as usual, HER. Graphics improve with every game. I almost never have anything bad to say here, and I like it that way!
    Rating: 10/10

    Phone Friends:
    I usually don't put this category in, so I'll make it snappy. I just wanted to express my love for the phone friends and conversations in this game. Very helpful, very entertaining. Bess was great, Hotchkiss was of course great, Jon Boyle offered good information, and the phone friends were all-around glorious.
    Rating: 10/10

    The ending, I hate to say it, was the lowpoint of the game for me. It had a good build up, but was ultimately rushed, thrown together, tacked on, and a big ol' letdown. Not everything was resolved. The end puzzle also didn't make a lot of sense. Not like it was difficult, although it kind of was (took me a million tries), but more like it just didn't fully make sense. I also hate third person with a passion! The ending was reminiscent of another game's ending, I won't say which as to not give it away, and I didn't like that one either. The culprit was a good, logical choice, but still... not everything was found out. Although one part of the ending was great -- poetic justice at its finest! Unfortunately, my oath to HER to keep spoilers nonexistant in this review keeps me from divulging any more info. Sorry friends. (Or not sorry, I guess. You probably don't wanna hear the spoilers!)
    Rating: 5.5/10

    Replay Value:
    Okay, so the first time I played this game, I was left with a "meh" feeling. You know? Like a little disappointed, but not tragically. A little excited, but not ecstatically. But when I replayed the game... I got a lot more excited about it! For whatever reason, it was ten times better the second time around. That's what inspired me to write this review. I want those people who at first felt "meh" about TMB, or even disliked it, to pop in that disc once more and give it another whirl! Because it's a good game. A very fun game. And it's educational, although in a subtle not-in-your-face way. I liked that. TMB is a game that must be replayed in order for its value to be truly appreciated. Which leaves me wondering... if I play it again... will I love it? Perhaps I should test this theory!
    Rating: 9/10

    Overall Score:
    Overall, TMB sounds like a "meh" game when you hear the initial plot. It looks like a "meh" game when you begin to play it. The characters seem "meh" at first. But none of it is. It's all good. The puzzles are quality, the characters are intriguing, the location is beautiful and surprising. Aside from a few (I wince as I type this) forgiveable (I guess) plot holes, and a hum-drum ending, TMB is a wonderful addition to your Nancy Drew PC collection. I'd reccommend it any day! All it needs is a second chance. Unless of course, you're smarter than me, and saw its greatness the first time around. Au revoir!

    Overall Score: 7.5/10

    Not my favourite, but definitely one I'll be playing again soon! It ranked 18th out of 27 on my list. (This doesn't seem high, but trust me, it is). It was originally in 23rd place, but got bumped after I replayed it. Feel free to come make your own list, I adore reading them!

    - Brenna

    P.S: "I am Ramses II."
    "I thought you looked familiar."
    Last edited by Roxylove47; June 10, 2014, 02:33 PM.
    you're asking the wrong amnesiac.

    Please forgive me for my username. I made it long ago when I didn't know any better.

    Rank the games!

  • #2
    Hi! I really appreciate reviews as lengthy and interesting as yours is, and I absolutely loved reading through it.
    (I'm sorry, it's like 3 am. I don't know why I'm writing this right now. I shouldn't be).
    LOL and I'm reading it at 4:30 AM. No regrets.

    Thanks for posting! (P.S. Great choice of quotes.) I'm off to check out more of your reviews now.


    • #3
      I loved this review!!! That's the exact feelings I have with everything, seriously! Except one thing-puzzles. Me and puzzles are twin sisters!! I love them so much! Anyway, thanks for this!
      ¸+*¨¯¨*×, AND GOODNESS KNOWS;
      '•-•*.......))..........the wicked's lives are lonely..
      .........¸×´....,×*¨¯¯¨*+,.....Goodness knows;
      ....,+´....,+´..............))............the wicked die alone.
      ..((_¸.×´................,×´.....,×*¨¯¨*+,..Nothing grows for the wicked;
      ........................((__¸,.+´........*•-•'......... they reap only what they sow..


      • #4
        I love, love, love this review! Hands down, the best one I've read on it & I've been reading a lot because I'm debating whether or not to get this game! I love Ancient Egypt, it's something I'm really passionate about & I will read, watch, or play anything remotely relating to it! So I cannot wait to get this game & play it.

        Thanks for your review!!

        Also played & finished, ICE, CRY. CLK & TRN